Gift Aid on admission funds remains stable

Mathew Little

Fears that charities would incur heavy losses because of the new Gift Aid system on admissions have not been realised.

Charitable attractions, such as zoos and heritage sites, faced Gift Aid 'D-Day' on 6 April, when they had to ask paying customers to donate an extra 10 per cent on top of the admission charge if they wanted to continue claiming back the tax. Charities could previously claim Gift Aid on all admission charges.

Brian Oldman, commercial director at the Zoological Society of London, said takings at London and Whipsnade Zoos were "broadly in line with what we were taking under the old regime".

He said that the vast majority of customers had agreed to donate the extra amount.

Gill Raikes, director of fundraising at the National Trust, which is testing the new system at 25 of its 310 properties, was "cautiously optimistic" about the new regime.

The children's museum Eureka said that more than 80 per cent of its visitors had agreed to the extra donation.

The Treasury has said that charities need to achieve a 70 per cent take-up rate to be no worse off than before.

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